Single use plastics are disposable plastics that are designed to be used once and then discarded. They are typically used for packaging materials, such as plastic bags, straws, cutlery, and stirrers, as well as for products like plastic water bottles, food containers, and product packaging. Single use plastics have become a widespread and popular choice because they are convenient, lightweight, and inexpensive. However, they are also a major contributor to plastic waste and pollution, as they often end up in landfills, litter the environment, and harm marine life and wildlife.
Why is single use plastic bad for people, animals and the environment?
There are several reasons why single-use plastic is bad:
1. It contributes to plastic pollution: Single use plastics are a major contributor to plastic pollution, as they are designed to be used once and then thrown away, meaning the plastic products have very short life cycles. This means that millions of tons of plastic such as plastic straws, plastic packaging, polystyrene cups and other types of plastic packaging, end up in landfills, litter the environment, and enter the oceans, where it can harm wildlife and ecosystems.
2. It is a waste of resources: The production of plastic requires fossil fuels and other resources, and single-use plastic is often used for short-term or disposable products. This means that these resources are being used to produce items that will only be used once and then discarded, leading to a waste of resources.
3. It can be harmful to human health: Some types of single use plastic, such as plastic food packaging, can leach chemicals into the food or drinks they contain. These chemicals can be harmful to human health if ingested.
4. It is not biodegradable: Single use plastic products are not biodegradable, meaning that they don't break down naturally in the environment. Instead, it can take hundreds of years to decompose, leading to long-term pollution.
Given these negative impacts, it is important to reduce our reliance on single-use plastic and to find alternatives to these types of disposable products.
How does single use plastic waste affect the oceans?
Plastic waste that ends up in the oceans can have a number of negative impacts on marine life, including entanglement, ingestion, and habitat destruction.
Many marine animals, such as whales, dolphins, and sea turtles, can become entangled in plastic debris such as straws, bags and other single use plastics which can restrict their movement and lead to injury or death.
Marine animals also ingest plastic debris, which can block their digestive tracts and lead to malnutrition and death.
Plastic debris from single use plastic items can accumulate in marine environments, leading to environmental damage, habitat destruction and the loss of biodiversity.
In addition to these impacts on marine life, plastic pollution in the oceans can also have economic consequences, as it can affect the fishing and tourism industries. It can also have negative impacts on human health, as the chemicals present in plastic can leach into the water and be ingested by people who consume seafood.
Being more sustainable in a wasteful world is not always easy but doing something small is always better than doing nothing!
At Just Bottle, we fund the collection of ocean plastic from coastline communities with no recycling in place. Every individual and Co-brand sale includes a contribution to various beach clean projects around the world which are 100% traceable through our partner organisations.
How can you help reduce plastic waste?
We all live in a culture of convenience, we can be part of the solution too though, it's never too late to make a small change. Turns out there's still a lot of work to do when it comes to single use plastic pollution, especially in the ocean. Your purchase from our future-focused business allows us to help fund beach clean-ups around the world.
Here are five simple ways that you can join us in our efforts to reduce single-use plastic usage:
1. Use a reusable water bottle: One of the easiest ways to reduce your use of single-use plastic is to use a reusable water bottle. Whether you're at home, at work, or on the go, having a durable, reliable water bottle that you can refill and reuse can significantly reduce the amount of plastic you consume. Just Bottle offers a wide range of stainless steel water bottles that are designed to be durable, stylish, and eco friendly.
2. Bring your own reusable shopping bags: Another simple but impactful way to reduce single-use plastic usage is by bringing your own reusable shopping bags when you go grocery shopping or run errands. To reduce plastic use, rather than relying on disposable plastic bags, opt for a durable, reusable bag that you can use over and over again. In case you forgot your reusable shopping bag at home but want to use less plastic, opt for paper bags instead.
3. Use a reusable coffee cup: If you're a coffee lover, you can make a big difference by using a reusable coffee cup instead of disposable coffee cups. Many coffee shops offer discounts to customers who bring their own cups, so you are reducing your plastic usage and saving money in the process.
4. Choose reusable food storage options: Rather than using disposable containers, opt for reusable food storage options such as glass or stainless steel containers. Not only will these options help you reduce your single-use plastic consumption, but they'll also help you save money in the long run.
5. Recycle when possible: While reducing your use of single-use plastic is important, it's also essential to properly dispose of the plastic that you do use. Make sure to recycle whenever possible, and be sure to properly dispose of any plastic that isn't able to be recycled.
In order to move away from a throwaway culture, it is important to promote the use of durable, repairable products, and to encourage the reuse and recycling of products. This can help to reduce waste and the demand for new resources, and can also help to conserve resources and protect the environment.
By following these simple steps, you can make a significant impact in reducing your own single-use plastic usage and helping to protect the environment. Join us at Just Bottle in our commitment to sustainability, and together we can make a difference by increasing recycled plastic, and using more plastic-free alternatives such as reusable containers, reusable water bottles, reusable cups, reusable bags and other reusable alternatives.
PS: If you want to learn more, read this interesting article we found: 100 Steps to a Plastic-Free Life